The topic is the starting point in the creation of any paper. When your focus is no cause and effect here are some tips to keep in mind before you search for one:
There is no greater hardship than picking an idea, getting invested in it and really becoming excited only to realize that the two factors you are looking at are not causally related or worse yet, they are not linked in any way at all. As soon as you start brainstorming, look out for issues that might become problematic later on.
There are different ways to address different people. Some like to be entertained by the essays first of all, others want to be informed strictly. You have to know which of these you are dealing with as you write. There are also some causes and effects that some people refuse to acknowledge which may prejudice them against your paper before they even begin to read.
As a savvy young writer in an edgy magazine you have a certain amount of freedom. As a high school student in a very conservative school you would have less. Know what you can get away with based on your status.
Your topics, if you followed those tips may look a bit like these:
Any of these could provide you with an excellent starting point for deciding on your own topics.